Friday, November 19, 2010

The Difference Between Weight Loss and Sustainable Weight Loss

Yo-Yo Dieting. We've all heard the term. It's when you go on some crazy, crash diet, lose weight, go back to your old eating habits and gain weight, then go on another crazy, crash diet, etc. etc. etc.

I thought I'd bring it up because of some of the comments to both my Rush Limbaugh posts and some of my other recent posts.

Yes, if you severely restrict your caloric intake you will lose weight. But just losing weight in the short term is meaningless. What matters is losing weight for good and not gaining it back. It matters not just for your self-image but for your health.

I quoted a doctor in this post who I think describes the real reality of weight loss well:

As a refresher, here is just part of what the Doctor said:

The two-month timeline here is important for another reason. Over the long term, controlling calories means either going hungry, or finding a way to feel full and satisfied on fewer calories. Here's where the quality of calories certainly does matter. Foods of high nutritional quality include, among their many virtues, the capacity to produce fullness on fewer calories. Eating until full and yet being lean is having your cake and eating it too -- but snack cakes will never get you there!

That's the nut. You can lose weight on Twinkies, but you won't lose the weight for good. Restricting calories on Twinkies is not sustainable. You'll feel hungry, and won't have the energy you need to complete your day. It's merely the crazy, crash diet of the Yo-Yo cycle.

If you want to lose weight and keep it off you have to make permanent, life-time changes to the way you eat. Eating unprocessed foods, and focusing on eating fresh fruits and vegetables will leave you filling full, satisfied and able to complete your day.

And, that ain't no Yo-Yo.


  1. People have lost weight eating well and not sustained it either. Losing weight is about a host of issues. But I've seen folks eat whole foods and clean and regain, and eat a lot of processed crap and keep it off. So, it depends on a multitude of factors.

    I want to ideally eat mostly clean and organic. BUT...I tried that and the scale barely budged. I started adding adjunct processed foods and the scale is moving. Calorie controlled ended up more important than the composition--so far.

    My ideal is to eat whole and natural and home-cooked mostly. But the reality is that things that are pre-measured, high protein, and easy to make have fit quite well into my lifestyle this year. What can I say? Not idea but it's helping.

    The key is for people to find what helps them eat less. Maybe for some people that's all packaged stuff. For others it's all fruits veggies and tofu and beans. But people have to find the means that helps them eat in a calorically controlled manner and avoiding triggers and setting up new habits and who knows what else. Emotional issues...seen people who worked through that lose scads.

    Generations before me stayed slim eating white bread, red meat, and margarine. Clearly, that sounds nuts to us now, but they did. I guess they ate less, moved more somehow.

  2. Red meat, white bread and margerine are not the same as Twinkies and Doritos.

  3. New Diet Taps into Pioneering Idea to Help Dieters Lose 15 Pounds within Only 21 Days!